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Maths A-level

Why study Mathematics?

On this course you will develop an understanding of advanced mathematics and appreciate some of its powerful applications. Pure core mathematics will build ideas in algebra, geometry, trigonometry and calculus to provide the conceptual foundations for applications in statistics and mechanics and beyond.

What do I learn?
You will be following the 2017 AQA specification:

Year 1
- Pure Core Mathematics
- Statistics
- Mechanics

Year 2
- Pure Core Mathematics
- Statistics
- Mechanics

You will learn through class teaching and discussion, group and individual classwork, regular directed homework, assessments, feedback and independent study. Challenge and support is provided, of course, but your sustained effort and application will make the biggest impact on your ultimate success on this course.

We expect you to be fully committed to your studies, to attend all timetabled classes and to submit all directed homework. In addition, you will have the opportunity to attend trips and visits according to the needs of individual subjects. There are many enrichment opportunities, which will enable you to extend your learning beyond the bounds of your chosen subjects.

Formal assessment is through public examinations in June of year 2 (three 120 minute papers).

Your progress will be assessed informally throughout, including through assessment tests, broadly twice each term. Your suitability to continue your studies into Year 2 will be assessed by internal examinations in May / June of Year 1.
What do I gain?
You will develop an understanding of advanced mathematical techniques and of coherence, connectedness and progression in mathematics. Importantly, you will practice using these techniques in difficult, unstructured problems.
You will practice the learning skills necessary for successful further academic study or employment, including persistence, effort, listening to and working with others, taking responsibility and managing your time.

By the end of the course you will have benefited from individual support, including clear advice about Higher Education and careers.
What do I need?
We require six grades 5 or C or above at GCSE, including English and Mathematics. There are subject specific criteria for some subjects; for Mathematics you will need GCSE Mathematics grade 7 or A or above. Exceptions are only considered subject to post-results interview.

A-level Mathematics is hard. For many students the big ideas are much harder to conceptualise and they are developed much faster than they have been used to previously. Regardless of your certified attainment at GCSE, you must avoid complacency and be prepared to think and to work hard if you want to succeed. A-level Mathematics is hard, but it rewards hard work.
What do I gain?
With three A-levels there are many possibilities. You can progress to higher education to study at Degree level. An A-level in Mathematics will help you access university to study for a BSc in Mathematics or a range of scientific or analytical subjects from Architecture to Zoology. You can alternatively progress directly into employment; A-levels demonstrate a high standard of education which many employers require as part of their entry criteria onto training programmes.
What else do I need to know?
You will need to provide (for year 1):
An advanced scientific calculator; we recommend the Casio fx-991EX as a minimum (around £30), or alternatively the Casio graphical calculators fx-9750, fx-9860 or fx-CG20 (around £60, £80 and £110 respectively).

Optionally, a hard copy of the textbook “AQA A-Level Mathematics Year 1 (AS)” by Goldie et al, published by Hodder (paperback ISBN 9781471852862 £27.99). Access to an electronic version of this textbook is expected to be provided, which you can access in class by smartphone or tablet if you have one.

Also a pen, paper and a ruler.
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